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Robert E Ricklefs
Studies of community organization and clade diversification that include functional traits have become an important component of the analysis of ecological and evolved systems. Such studies frequently are limited by availability of consistently collected data. Here, I present a data set including eight measurements of the external morphology of 1642 species, roughly one-quarter of all passerine birds (Aves: Order Passeriformes), from all parts of the world, characterizing the relative proportions of the wing, tail, legs, and beak...
February 27, 2017: Ecology
Thomas Edward Martin, Josh Nightingale, Jack Baddams, Joseph Monkhouse, Aronika Kaban, Hafiyyan Sastranegara, Yeni Mulyani, George Alan Blackburn, Wilf Simcox
Birds are a frequently chosen group for biodiversity monitoring as they are comparatively straightforward and inexpensive to sample and often perform well as ecological indicators. Two commonly used techniques for monitoring tropical forest bird communities are point counts and mist nets. General strengths and weaknesses of these techniques have been well-defined; however little research has examined how their effectiveness is mediated by the ecology of bird communities and their habitats. We examine how the overall performance of these methodologies differs between two widely separated tropical forests-Cusuco National Park (CNP), a Honduran cloud forest, and the lowland forests of Buton Forest Reserves (BFR) located on Buton Island, Indonesia...
2017: PloS One
Ben Swallow, Ruth King, Stephen T Buckland, Mike P Toms
The importance of multispecies models for understanding complex ecological processes and interactions is beginning to be realized. Recent developments, such as those by Lahoz-Monfort et al. (2011), have enabled synchrony in demographic parameters across multiple species to be explored. Species in a similar environment would be expected to be subject to similar exogenous factors, although their response to each of these factors may be quite different. The ability to group species together according to how they respond to a particular measured covariate may be of particular interest to ecologists...
December 2016: Ecology and Evolution
Guy M Kirwan, Nigel J Collar
The hummingbird Amazilia alfaroana is known from a single specimen, collected on the Volcán de Miravalles, in north-west Costa Rica, in September 1895. Since the early 20th century, the taxon has been almost always been treated as a subspecies of Indigo-capped Hummingbird A. cyanifrons, which is otherwise endemic to Colombia, although it has also been tentatively suggested that the holotype might represent a hybrid between two unnamed species of trochilids. Our detailed analysis of the specimen reveals species-level differences between A...
November 10, 2016: Zootaxa
Ralf Sauerbrei, Birgit Aue, Christian Krippes, Eva Diehl, Volkmar Wolters
Biomass is increasingly used as an alternative source for energy in Europe. Woody material cut from hedges is considered to provide a suitable complement to maize and oilseed rape, which are currently the dominant biomass sources. Since shrubs and trees are also important habitats for birds, however, coppicing of hedges at the landscape scale may adversely affect the diversity of the avifauna. To evaluate this risk, we estimated the response of hedge birds to three management scenarios differing in cutting intensity and hedge selection...
February 1, 2017: Journal of Environmental Management
Michaël Luciano Tantely, Steven M Goodman, Tsirinaina Rakotondranaivo, Sébastien Boyer
West Nile fever (WNF) is a zoonotic disease, occurring nearly globally. In Madagascar, West Nile virus (WNV) was first detected in 1978 from wild birds and the virus is currently distributed across the island, but no epidemic or epizootic period has been recorded. One fatal human case of WNV infection was reported in 2011, suggesting a "tip of the iceberg" phenomenon of a possible WNF epidemic/epizootic on the island. The main objective of this literature-based survey is to review patterns of WNV circulation in Madagascar from the entomological and ornithological points of view...
2016: Parasite: Journal de la Société Française de Parasitologie
Thomas Galewski, Vincent Devictor
Many species have suffered large population declines due to the anthropogenic influence on ecosystems. Understanding historical population trends is essential for informing best efforts to preserve species. We propose a new method to reconstruct the past structure of a regional species pool, based on historical naturalist literature. Qualitative information collected from annotated checklists and reports can be relevant to identify major long-term community changes. We reviewed ornithological literature on the Camargue, the largest wetland in France...
2016: PloS One
Matthew Holmes
During the latter-half of the nineteenth century, the utility of the house sparrow (Passer domesticus) to humankind was a contentious topic. In Britain, numerous actors from various backgrounds including natural history, acclimatisation, agriculture and economic ornithology converged on the bird, as contemporaries sought to calculate its economic cost and benefit to growers. Periodicals and newspapers provided an accessible and anonymous means of expression, through which the debate raged for over 50 years...
October 26, 2016: Journal of the History of Biology
Judy Shamoun-Baranes, Andrew Farnsworth, Bart Aelterman, Jose A Alves, Kevin Azijn, Garrett Bernstein, Sérgio Branco, Peter Desmet, Adriaan M Dokter, Kyle Horton, Steve Kelling, Jeffrey F Kelly, Hidde Leijnse, Jingjing Rong, Daniel Sheldon, Wouter Van den Broeck, Jan Klaas Van Den Meersche, Benjamin Mark Van Doren, Hans van Gasteren
Globally, billions of flying animals undergo seasonal migrations, many of which occur at night. The temporal and spatial scales at which migrations occur and our inability to directly observe these nocturnal movements makes monitoring and characterizing this critical period in migratory animals' life cycles difficult. Remote sensing, therefore, has played an important role in our understanding of large-scale nocturnal bird migrations. Weather surveillance radar networks in Europe and North America have great potential for long-term low-cost monitoring of bird migration at scales that have previously been impossible to achieve...
2016: PloS One
Miguel Monteiro, Luís Reino, Martim Melo, Pedro Beja, Cristiane Bastos-Silveira, Manuela Ramos, Diana Rodrigues, Isabel Queirós Neves, Susana Consciência, Rui Figueira
The former Instituto de Investigação Científica Tropical-IICT (Lisbon, Portugal), recently integrated into the University of Lisbon, gathers important natural history collections from Portuguese-speaking African countries. In this study, we describe the bird collection from the Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe, which was fully taxonomically checked and georeferenced. The IICT bird collection contains 5598 specimens, of which 559 are from São Tomé and Príncipe, representing 85 taxa, including 19 endemic species and 13 endemic subspecies of birds...
2016: ZooKeys
A Awad, S R Khalil, Y M Abd-Elhakim
Veritable identification and differentiation of avian species is a vital step in conservative, taxonomic, forensic, legal and other ornithological interventions. Therefore, this study involved the application of molecular approach to identify some avian species i.e. Chicken (Gallus gallus), Muskovy duck (Cairina moschata), Japanese quail (Coturnix japonica), Laughing dove (Streptopelia senegalensis), and Rock pigeon (Columba livia). Genomic DNA was extracted from blood samples and partial sequence of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene (358 bp) was amplified and sequenced using universal primers...
2015: Iranian journal of veterinary research
Juan Ignacio Areta, Vítor de Q Piacentini, Elisabeth Haring, Anita Gamauf, Luís Fábio Silveira, Erika Machado, Guy M Kirwan
Known with certainty solely from a unique male specimen collected in central Brazil in the first quarter of the 19th century, the Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct) Hooded Seedeater Sporophila melanops has been one of the great enigmas of Neotropical ornithology, arguably the only one of a host of long-lost species from Brazil to remain obstinately undiscovered. We reanalysed the morphology of the type specimen, as well as a female specimen postulated to represent the same taxon, and sequenced mitochondrial DNA (COI and Cyt-b) from both individuals...
2016: PloS One
Luciano Pires Andrade, Horasa Maria Lima Silva-Andrade, Rachel Maria Lyra-Neves, Ulysses Paulino Albuquerque, Wallace Rodrigues Telino-Júnior
BACKGROUND: This paper discusses the results of ethno-ornithological research conducted on the local ecological knowledge (LEK) of artisanal fishers in northeast Brazil between August 2013 and October 2014. METHODS: The present study analyzed the LEK of 240 artisanal fishermen in relation to Nearctic shorebirds and the factors that may be affecting their populations. We examined whether differences occurred according to the gender and age of the local population...
March 3, 2016: Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine
Edward C Dickinson
Due to its public popularity, ornithology has a huge corpus of scientific publication for a relatively small number of species. Although there are global checklists of currently recognised taxa, there has been only limited, mainly individual, effort to build a nomenclatural database that the science of ornithology deserves. This is especially true in relation to concise synonymies. With the arrival of ZooBank and the Biodiversity Heritage Library, the time has come to develop synonymies and to add fuller bibliographic detail to databases...
2016: ZooKeys
Gabriele Droege, Till Töpfer
Corvids (Corvidae) play a major role in ornithological research. Because of their worldwide distribution, diversity and adaptiveness, they have been studied extensively. The aim of the Corvids Literature Database (CLD, is to record all publications (citation format) on all extant and extinct Crows, Ravens, Jays and Magpies worldwide and tag them with specific keywords making them available for researchers worldwide. The self-maintained project started in 2006 and today comprises 8000 articles, spanning almost 500 years...
2016: Database: the Journal of Biological Databases and Curation
Atanaska Marinova-Petkova, Georgi Georgiev, Todor Petkov, Daniel Darnell, John Franks, Ghazi Kayali, David Walker, Patrick Seiler, Angela Danner, Allison Graham, Pamela McKenzie, Scott Krauss, Richard J Webby, Robert G Webster
OBJECTIVES: Ducks can shed and spread influenza A viruses (IAVs) while showing no disease signs. Our objective was to clarify the role of 'foie gras' ducks in the circulation of IAVs in Bulgaria. METHODS: Monthly avian influenza surveillance was conducted on 63 'foie gras' duck farms, 52 of which were surveyed throughout the study between November 2008 and April 2012. Virologic and serologic samples were collected and tested. During this time, wild bird samples were collected at major wild bird-resting areas near the Black Sea coast and Danube River...
March 2016: Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses
Stephen T Garnett, Daisy E Duursma, Glenn Ehmke, Patrick-Jean Guay, Alistair Stewart, Judit K Szabo, Michael A Weston, Simon Bennett, Gabriel M Crowley, David Drynan, Guy Dutson, Kate Fitzherbert, Donald C Franklin
We introduce a dataset of biological, ecological, conservation and legal information for every species and subspecies of Australian bird, 2056 taxa or populations in total. Version 1 contains 230 fields grouped under the following headings: Taxonomy & nomenclature, Phylogeny, Australian population status, Conservation status, Legal status, Distribution, Morphology, Habitat, Food, Behaviour, Breeding, Mobility and Climate metrics. It is envisaged that the dataset will be updated periodically with new data for existing fields and the addition of new fields...
2015: Scientific Data
Glaucia Del-Rio, Luís Fabío Silveira, Vagner Cavarzere, Marco Antonio Rêgo
Piculus chrysochloros (Vieillot 1818) is a species of woodpecker that ranges from Argentina to Panama, occurring in lowland forests as well as Cerrado, Caatinga and Chaco vegetation. Currently, nine subspecies are accepted, but no study has evaluated individual variation within populations, so the status of these taxa remains uncertain. Here we review the taxonomy and distribution of this species, based on morphological and morphometric data from 267 specimens deposited in ornithological collections. Our results suggest the existence of six unambiguous taxonomic units that can be treated as phylogenetic species: Piculus xanthochloros (Sclater & Salvin 1875), from northwestern South America; Piculus capistratus (Malherbe 1862), from northern Amazonia west to the Branco River; Piculus laemostictus Todd 1937, from southern Amazonia; Piculus chrysochloros (Vieillot 1818), from the Cerrado, Caatinga and Chaco; Piculus paraensis (Snethlage 1907) from the Belém Center of Endemism; and Piculus polyzonus (Valenciennes 1826) from the Atlantic Forest...
2013: Zootaxa
Jason W Chapman, Cecilia Nilsson, Ka S Lim, Johan Bäckman, Don R Reynolds, Thomas Alerstam
Animals that use flight as their mode of transportation must cope with the fact that their migration and orientation performance is strongly affected by the flow of the medium they are moving in, that is by the winds. Different strategies can be used to mitigate the negative effects and benefit from the positive effects of a moving flow. The strategies an animal can use will be constrained by the relationship between the speed of the flow and the speed of the animal's own propulsion in relation to the surrounding air...
January 2016: Journal of Animal Ecology
Jens Lachmund
In this paper I study the engagement of German ornithologists with the Collared Dove, a bird species of Asian origin that spread massively throughout Central Europe in the 1940s and 1950s. Never before had the spread of a single species attracted so much attention from European ornithologists. Ornithologists were not only fascinated by the exotic origin of the bird, but even more so by the unprecedented rapidity of its expansion. As it is argued in the paper, the advent of the bird created an outstanding opportunity for ornithologists to study the process of biogeographic range expansion...
June 2015: Science in Context
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